Quantum networking is a vision for an inherently secure network in which entanglement and delayed transmissions are possible, offering greater security and privacy than existing methods of communication.
Quantum networks must be capable of sending and receiving quantum information across long distances without breaking its entanglement, which can be tricky given that quantum information comprises pairs of qubits that cannot be copied directly.
Communication over long distances requires special repeaters that retransmit signals without disturbing the qubits' state, which appear between end nodes. These repeaters may consist of beamsplitters and photodetectors or more sophisticated systems performing advanced processing functions like quantum logic gates.
Researchers are employing an approach known as entanglement swapping to do this, which involves repeating the same signal billions of times without needing to read qubits - similar to a relay race without reading qubits directly. As more swapping stations come online, quantum networks could expand exponentially allowing many more nodes across long distances to connect effectively.
Aliro products provide designers and engineers with tools they need to design such complex network architectures by simulating fundamental components, including network stacks. This enables more detailed analysis.
Other key considerations must include centralized request scheduling, which ensures that two neighboring quantum network nodes trigger entanglement generation at exactly the same time, and precise triggering of entanglement attempts. Both depend on maintaining a granular clock which is maintained by MHP in the quantum network.